The Legion of Honor, founded in 1802, is France’s highest order of merit.
Rabat – France has awarded three Moroccan personalities the order of knight of the Legion of Honor of the French Republic on Wednesday in Rabat.
The recipients are Chief of Protocol to Morocco’s Head of Government Omar Ait Salah; radiologist and social anthropologist Chakib Guessous; and the director of the Moroccan Agency for Nuclear and Radiological Safety and Security (AMSSNuR), Khammar Mrabit.
Jean-Francois Girault, the ambassador of France to Morocco, awarded the honors on behalf of the president of France, Emmanuel Macron, at a ceremony attended by prominent political, business, diplomatic, and arts personalities.
Girault praised Omar Ait Salah’s contribution to the organization of high-level meetings between Morocco and France, which have been “key spaces for the expression of the rich and diverse exceptional partnership between our two countries.”
He also spoke of Chakib Guessous’s “unfailing commitment” to children’s rights and his concern to move society towards “greater cohesion.” Guessous is a doctor of anthropology and political sociology, radiologist, actor, and author. He focuses on children’s rights, schooling, literacy, poverty, and marginalization.
Guessous wrote “The Exploitation of Innocence” on Moroccan child labor in 2005 and “Marriage and Concubinage in the Arab Countries” in 2018.
Girault also remarked on Khammar Mrabit’s commitment to nuclear safety, both within the International Atomic Energy Agency and as the director general of the AMSSNuR.
The honorees welcomed the recognition and invoked the common history of Morocco and France.
The Legion of Honor, founded in 1802, is France’s highest order of merit. It has approximately 92,000 members, rewarded for their outstanding merits in the service of causes that France defends. The knight of the Legion of Honor is awarded for a minimum of 20 years of public service or 25 years of professional activity and merits.
Historically, three Moroccans received the Legion of Honor’s grand cross degree: Muhammad IV, the 19th century sultan of Morocco; T’hami El Glaoui, a pro-French protectorate-era pasha of Marrakech, and Mahamed Tazi, a pasha of Fez.